Today, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that South Carolina, Nebraska, and Kansas have been awarded three-year renewal grants through the Preschool Development Grant Birth through Five (PDG B-5) program to implement the strategic plans they developed using first-year planning grants awarded in 2018.
Amount awarded to each state:
- South Carolina: $11,146,654
- Nebraska: $8,943,000
- Kansas: $8,943,000
Last year, Congress allocated an additional $25 million in funding for PDG B-5 above the $250 million appropriated for the program the previous two fiscal years. The increased funding created an opportunity for ACF to award grants to states that had applied for but did not receive funding in 2019. This past December, 20 states were awarded three-year renewal grants and six states and territories that did not previously received PDG B-5 funding were awarded initial planning grants to complete needs assessments and strategic plans.
Building on the momentum behind this popular, a bipartisan group of legislators are seeking additional FY2021 funding for the program. And Republican and Democratic governors across the country have touted the work their states have done through the PDG B-5 program.
A full list of the states that received funding for FY2020 can be found here.
PDG B-5 is a competitive federal grant program established in December 2015 as part of the bipartisan Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The goal of PDG B-5 is to help states: maximize parental choice, improve transitions within early learning and care programs, and improve the overall quality of programs. These goals are intended to improve states’ existing early childhood landscapes by building upon active federal, state, and local early care and learning investments. The first year of grant funding was awarded to 46 states at the end of 2018, and funded state-level needs assessments and strategic plans to optimize existing early childhood education resources.
“The Preschool Development Grant Birth through Five program has given states an opportunity to build and expand early learning systems and improve care for millions of children and families across the country,” said First Five Years Fund (FFYF) executive director Sarah Rittling. “The additional funds passed by Congress and awarded to South Carolina, Nebraska, and Kansas today will ensure high-quality early learning and care is available to the children who need it most. PDG B-5 has received broad bipartisan support from local, state, and federal leaders since its creation, and FFYF will continue working with policymakers to ensure it receives the highest possible funding for years to come.”Last year, FFYF and other advocates sent a letter to ACF outlining recommendations for how the criteria for a second year of grant funding might be designed. The recommendations included: continuity of funding levels, encouraging partner engagement, and providing technical support to states. Additionally, PDG B-5 has received bipartisan praise from lawmakers and governors.